Highway 16 Corridor Review and Upgrades On the Way
Prince George, B.C. – The stretch of Highway 16 from the intersection with Highway 97 to Bear/Kimball roads, has the highest traffic volume and highest number of crashes. That stretch of roadway is part of a review being undertaken by the Provincial Ministry of Transportation and the City of Prince George.
In the recently approved Capital Plan for the City of Prince George, $60 thousand dollars has been set aside in 2017 for the City’s portion of the safety review that will take place in conjunction with the Ministry of Transportation. A further $130 thousand dollars is set aside for new traffic lights at the Bear/Kimball Road intersection with Highway 16.
“The review is a result of that tragic accident that occurred at Highway 16 and Cowart Road last summer” says Mayor Lyn Hall. One young woman lost her life in that crash. The Ministry of Transportation responded by installing a dedicated left turn signal. ”So we’re taking a look now at what we need to do as a City to coordinate with the Province if they are looking at expansion or upgrades on Highway 16″ says Mayor Hall.
He says the review will examine the arterial roads that lead out of residential areas in the upper College Heights area and Westgate. “We’re also talking about the connector, that runs from the end of Ospika over on to Highway 16. Is there an option there? We are taking a look at everything to see what we can do about reducing congestion and making sure that if we do have an accident on Highway 16, that we have arterial routes to get out of the College Heights and Westgate area.”
The traffic signal project at Bear/ Kimball Roads and Highway 16 project was initiated by the MOTI, and they are moving ahead with design and construction in 2017. This project involves a new full movement set of traffic signals complete with pedestrian buttons and vehicle detection on Hwy 16 at Bear Road and Kimball Road.
Mayor Hall says when the MOTI indicated it was going to review the needs on Highway 16, he asked that “everything be thrown into the basket, let’s see what we can do to reduce accidents, reduce traffic, provide access out of the area if something should happen in 16.”
Mayor Hall says while the Ministry did provide a dedicated left turn signal at 16 and Cowart, further improvements can be made “Left turn lanes are important, the stand alone left turn signal is important at these intersections, I think the further we go up, there’s intersections we need to look at.” He says there will be new traffic control lights at Ferry and 16 , “so there is work we can do on almost every intersection.”
The capital plan also includes a contribution to the Ministry of Transportation’s installation of traffic signals at First and Queensway. That project is pegged at $130 thousand dollars.
In all three cases, the funds are coming from either Development cost charges, the General Infrastructure Investment Fund or a combination of both.
The west exit from Walmart needs to be addressed. It’s ridiculous to have the side road that is too narrow to have road markings as the one and only west exit from a major shopping area. Ensuring that there was a proper exit with lights should have been the developer’s responsibility when Walmart was first built, not pushing the traffic up to Westgate and through the intersection that was never intended to handle all the Walmart traffic.
I like to blame the Drivers more then anything, Tailgating ,Speeding no Signals and did I say driving like they are invincible . I never make a left turn to Cosco or Superstore, I drive down Cowart Road thru Collage Heights by at Rona and straight across HWY16. Avoid making left turns, Defencive Driving 101.
Exactly. It doesn’t seem to matter how much you improve roads, when drivers are stupid there are accidents.
I don’t know if some sort of really good monitored teaching is necessary or drivers followed and observed is the answer. The truth is though, until people start taking driving seriously, there will be too many people behind the wheel who are really unqualified to be there and they will put everyone at risk.
Good drivers shouldn’t have to suffer this situation.
I dislike the idea of another stop light on my commute to work.But that intersection is scary when it is foggy.This will be money well spent.Maybe they could also plan to put street lights west to the next intersection.
Agreed, that corner is super dark. Plus with the cement barricades in the middle, there have been a few times that I’ve been surprised by deer standing in the other lane that my headlights don’t light up.
I’m actually not going to mind the extra stop light. Rather that than people pulling travel trailers and boats trying to make a left out of the gas station during the busy summer season when they think they might have time to make it safely.
Election is coming and that’s big vote winner they think.
Didn’t know Hall was running for re-election so soon
It is only a matter of time before another tragic accident happens at the bottom of Peden Hill. To many times I have seen trucks running yellow and even red lights to make climbing the hill. Mean while watching vehicles turn right from Vance onto the Highway. What is needed is a warning light by the Husky gas station on Range. I am almost certain if one was there that tragic accident might of been avoided. Same with Tyner and Hwy 16W. Only a matter of time.
Yep. Is laying on the horn while you run the red light with your b-train part of the professional drivers handbook? It must be for how often I see it.
You people must have nothing else to but hang out at that intersection for the entire day. I use that intersection regularly and have yet to see any of the things that you say happen on a regular basis.
Actually it is interceptor, maybe you and others should read it. If all the armchair quarter backs were forced to ride along for a day your attitudes would change in a damn hurry.
I drive these highways on a regular basis,I’d like to thank Excel and Lomak, they’ve got good folks in the drivers seat.
I’m not blaming the truck drivers. Traveling at 60 kms. There is no way they could stop. But an early warning would alert the drivers the light is about to change
Traffic control on that intersection to Bob Voyage is long overdue. It has been nothing but luck that there hasn’t been a fatal accident there.
Like Western, Jutland, Sykes/Blackwater, Buckingham, Haldi, 18th, Railway Rd, Terminal Blvd, Continental Way, Boundary Rd, Hooferkamp/Blueberry, Northwood Pulp, Houghtaling, Bellamy, Shady Lane, Kenworth Rd, Shamrock Rd… the list goes on, you have to cross traffic from side roads onto highways all over town
HaHa, yer right, seems folks think they have pilots licenses on that stretch.
“We’re also talking about the connector, that runs from the end of Ospika over on to Highway 16.Is there an option there?” That is so long overdue, so long as it’s a merge and not a yield on 16. What am I saying? People sometimes don’t know the difference? Yep. That alone would take a lot of heat off Tyner and Domano. I’m wondering if they wouldn’t need to put a third lane west to ensure no congestion and smoother flow with the amount of trucks crawling the hill.
I don’t think Marleau/Frontage Road has been widened since the dark ages, should have happened when Walmart went in.
You know, we can put up warning signs before each intersection in town, as well as flashing lights everywhere but there are so many already, it’s becoming way too convenient and making lazy drivers. Same with vehicles, so many features, people forget they have to pay attention, keep their situational awareness, drive defensively, courteously. Recall the joke about cruise control, driver thought autopilot and went in the back of the van to make a sandwich.
Outwest, that’s driving smart.
This news story is a rehash of this one:
Expect this project to appear in the news at least 5 more times between now and the May 9th election, the Liberal Government needs to get some positive spin “mileage” out of it.
? Has absolutely nothing to do with 4 laning from Bunce to Jensen
How is the work on the Cariboo CONnector coming along? Did they do another 10 km this year? I expect there will be another big story about it before the election. How many elections has this project been used in?
It is a 50 year project to four lane from here to Cache Creek. The first decade or so has already been used up with some four laning and the odd new bridge along the whole stretch, some new passing lanes here and there, some better left turn lanes and intersections. That is about all.
The farther north one looks the less improvement is visible. The traffic is still rolling right through downtown Quesnel along Front Street, no bypass. Through Hixon only two lanes…and so forth! Well, everything is progressing at a snail’s pace. The highway budget money is primarily spoken for by the Okanagan and the Lower Mainland.
I agree Prince George. Snails pase exactly. Tha Alberta government managed to get 400 plus kilometres between Edmonton and Grand Prairie twinned and divided in under a decade spending $720 million.
Not the same comparisons.
No kidding! It’s way cheaper to build highways in most of Alberta than it is in most of BC!
Doesn’t take much hindsight to see that! Oops, maybe it does, eh Hindsight? ;-)
I hope they do a plan to identify how and when an over/under pass could be built at 97&16. I think it is essential to get a plan in place before any further development takes place at that intersection.
We need to get commercial highway traffic off of Ferry Avenue driving by that school while all the kids are out in the playground. Its so stupid the school doesn’t even have a fence on the east side right next to the School District head office, and everyday one sees kids as young as 7-8 years old playing there not 30-feet from the road with nothing to stop them if a ball goes out on the road or what not. One has to wonder where their priorities are.
I also agree with the Ospika connector finally being completed after 40-years of sitting half finished.
Time Will Tell
As for highway intersections… I think we need a law that says the lights will not begin to change for a minimum of 6-seconds from the time a car pulls up to the intersection to cross a highway. Its just plan dangerous to have cars pull up to the light and it instantly starts to change. Make them wait 6-seconds so traffic has time to adjust.
I would like to see all highway lights with the same programming of the light on Vanderhoof hill. That one has a 6-second delay and its perfect… and no need for a warning light that the signal will change.
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